This is the debut full-length album from Cigarettes After Sex, following up on a number of EPs. They’ve stepped things up for the occasion, with a sound more widescreen than ever before. The songs are romantic in subject matter and sonic construction: this could well be the soundtrack to your next heartache. CD and LP editions available on Partisan Records.
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Again, why would you call a band that? Terrible terrible name. I’d be surprised if this album is being talked about in ten years time and it’s all because of that name. The album actually isn’t as good as other similar records by Mazzy Star, Low and Cowboy Junkies but tries pretty damn hard to reach those dizzy heights. As well as the name the thing stopping this from being brilliant is Greg Gonzalez weedy voice. Stick Hope Sandoval on top of this and change the name to something like …Desert Opera…. and we could have a solid gold classic.
Let’s not beat about the bush - the music is good. It sits somewhere between Mazzy Star and Slowdive. These are slow carefully thought out songs that plod quietly with shoegaze ringing away in the background. The main thing to note early on is that the lyrics are great. You are hanging on every one of Gonzales words right from the get go. CAS use space nicely in their music, with moments where the atmospheres are reduced to just bass vocals and drums, you can almost set your watch by when the guitars come back into the mix. They have a trick and they do it time after time. Now this is strong and stable…listen ‘Apocalypse’ and you’ve heard the whole album but if you are charmed by the sound you won’t mind at all. It’s seriously cinematic, I can hear bits of Chris Isaak, David Lynch and even Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Streets of Philadelphia’ on ‘Flash’.
It’s a lovely album of carefully repeating tricks. It’s good despite itself but just imagine what it could have been.
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